This is the weekend that traffic begins to spike on area waterways. KYW’s Jay Lloyd, a US Coast Guard veteran, offers some getaway tips that will make your summer safer and more fun.

by Jay Lloyd
KYW Newsradio 1060

Recent fatal boating mishaps suggest that boaters and their guests may need some reminders.

First and foremost, if the weather forecast is bad, the sky is threatening, and small craft warnings are flying, find something else to do.

When going out on the water, leave behind a “float plan” –- a written itinerary spelling out where you’re going and when you’ll be back.  It gives search parties a starting point.

Don’t play macho man. Keep your life jacket handy and wear it if the bay, sea, or river starts to kick up.  Kids should always wear them, underway and on docks.

Know the rules of the road -– the traffic regulations that govern the waterways.  But never assume that an oncoming boater knows them.  Be defensive.

Now some thoughts for boat guests: never wear street shoes on a boat; they make a mess.  Make sure you know how to work the pumping system on the head.

And remember the guest who told his host he’d pay for the gas.  What he didn’t know was the boat took 200 gallons.  Bring wine instead.

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